During the compilation of evidence this morning against the alleged murderers of Daphne Caruana Galizia, Middleman Melvin Theuma, who used to work as a Taxi driver and was recently granted a full pardon to testify in all cases related to the journalist’s murder stated that coincidentally he had once given a lift to Daphne herself.
During his testimony and after being asked by the parte-civile lawyer, who is appearing on behalf of the Caruana Galizia family, whether he had ever met with the murdered journalist, Theuma stated that he had met her once whilst he was waiting by his taxi and noticed that someone had slashed Ms. Caruana Galizia’s tyres. Theuma stated that he had given her a lift to her destination and did not ask for the usual fee to be paid.
This was a coincidence and it is understood that it happened way before the murder plot started being hatched.
Caruana Galizia Murder Timeline
Back On 16 October 2017, Caruana Galizia was assassinated close to her home when a car bomb was detonated inside her vehicle, attracting widespread local and international condemnation of the attack. In December 2017, three men were arrested in connection with the car bomb attack.
On 19 November 2019, Prime Minister Joseph Muscat announced a deal with a witness, Melvin Theuma. Theuma is thought to be able to provide comprehensive information about the murder case and other crimes, he has received impunity from prosecution.
On 20 November Yorgen Fenech, a well known local businessman, attempted to leave Malta on his private yacht, with the Armed Forces of Malta intercepting his boat and arresting him as a “person of interest” in the Caruana Galizia murder enquiry. Maltese media have alleged that Fenech was familiar with Melvin Theuma, a taxi driver with links to criminal enterprises, who had been described in local media as a potential “middleman” in the murder.
On 23 November 2019, Fenech offered himself as a witness. He promised information about the murder case and other offenses, in exchange for immunity but this was turned down.
On 25 November 2019, the star witness, Melvin Theuma, was pardoned by President George Vella at the request of Prime Minister Joseph Muscat.
Fenech’s defense tried to call the whole process into question. This was successful and Fenech was released on 29 November 2019. The businessman was viewed prejudicially in the public eye, according to his defense, who said that he could not hope for a proper investigation and a fair trial.
On 30 November 2019, an indictment was filed against Fenech in Valletta court and he was accused of complicity in the murder of Caruana Galizia, amongst other charges. Fenech pleaded not guilty. He has been jailed since November 30, 2019.
Six days after the arrest of Fenech, Keith Schembri, the Prime Minister’s chief of staff resigned his government post on 26 November 2019, and was subsequently arrested for questioning. Schembri was later released by police.
A doctor Adrian Vella was also arrested on this date. He is said to have served as a secret messenger between Schembri and Fenech.
Joseph Muscat, Malta’s Prime Minister, announced his resignation on 1 December 2019 on television, but he still wants to hold office until 12 January. He informed the President of Malta, George Vella, that he would be resigning his duties. His decision was influenced by the investigation and the then obvious connections to his chief of staff.